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The reality of inner-city transport is usually not very attractive. Packed roads, long queues, jam-packed trains and cancelled services characterise everyday commuting for many people and make the individual transport experience somewhat less than pleasant. “I have this image floating before my eyes,” says Felix Jägle from Bosch Research, “where I am on my way to work at dawn and floating effortlessly and noiselessly above the city streets, instead of looking at tunnel walls and blank faces. I listen to music and watch the morning news on my way.” To achieve this, Felix Jägle wishes to combine the cost-effective and flexible infrastructure of a cable car with the user-oriented operations of “pod transport”. What would it be like, the thought goes, if passengers could be transported above the streets, instead of on them? And how would it be if a cable car did away with the central drive system and all its carriages could travel autonomously on a fixed, suspended track? This approach bears the name eRopeway and involves any user travelling on demand and without stopping to one of many small stations dotted along the eRopeway track. The route network is made up of modules and can be expanded as needed. Carbon emissions, local emissions and the consumption of resources, be they fuel or space, will also be able to be reduced with the system. The Moscow-based studio Art Lebedev has been contracted to design the appearance of the system and of the weatherproof passenger cabins, in which Wi-Fi will be standard, and to develop a video that demonstrates the functionality of the eRopeway. The goal is clear: less of the inconvenient mass transport, more of the mobility tailored to individuals.

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